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Can anyone take a look at this?

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Re: Can anyone take a look at this?

Postby adrianus » Wed Jul 07, 2010 5:39 pm

Smythe wrote:I have been translating indirect speech as something like "Dracula said that his blood is a beautiful color". This may just be a matter of taste or it may be my lack of understanding, but why would you use the perfect/imperfect of 'esse' in indirect speech?

Because that's good English. Latin is different. I'm saying "was" in English (not "the perfect/imperfect of 'esse' in indirect speech" in Latin, note). It can help to remember the Latin if you twist your English to suit it, though.
Quià est anglicum rectum. Aliter latinè dicitur. Formulam autem latinam meliùs in memoriâ teneri potest si anglicum tuum mutes ad latinum accommodandum.
I'm writing in Latin hoping for correction, and not because I'm confident in how I express myself. Latinè scribo ut ab omnibus corrigar, non quod confidenter me exprimam.
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Re: Can anyone take a look at this?

Postby Smythe » Wed Jul 07, 2010 5:46 pm

Coolio. Thanks.

adrianus wrote: It can help to remember the Latin if you twist your English to suit it, though.


Yep, I am very guilty of this.
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Re: Can anyone take a look at this?

Postby adrianus » Wed Jul 07, 2010 5:55 pm

modus.irrealis wrote:Just in case I'm giving the wrong impression, I'm fine with this transformation (which is the one Alatius gave before) with meaning of a current state. So I don't think the Orberg sentence is wrong...

Quaestionem tuam priùs positam compellabam // I've just been responding to your earlier question:
modus.irrealis wrote:Otherwise, was I correct in saying it should be "Pocula gemmis ornata sunt"?
I'm writing in Latin hoping for correction, and not because I'm confident in how I express myself. Latinè scribo ut ab omnibus corrigar, non quod confidenter me exprimam.
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Re: Can anyone take a look at this?

Postby furrykef » Wed Jul 07, 2010 6:34 pm

To clarify this point:

Smythe wrote:
adrianus wrote:Indirect speech // Oratio obliqua

"Dixit Dracula sanguinem eius/ei colorem pulchrum esse" = "Dracula said that his blood was a beautiful colour"
"Dixit Dracula colorem sanguinis eius/ei pulchrum esse" = "Dracula said that the colour of his blood was beautiful"


I have been translating indirect speech as something like "Dracula said that his blood is a beautiful color". This may just be a matter of taste or it may be my lack of understanding, but why would you use the perfect/imperfect of 'esse' in indirect speech?


Wheelock says (in Chapter 25) that the time that the infinitive verb in an indirect statement takes place is relative to the main verb:

Wheelock wrote:Regardless of the tense of the main verb:

1. the present infinitive indicates the same time as that of the main verb (= contemporaneous infinitive)
2. the perfect infinitive indicates time before that of the main verb (= prior infinitive)
3. the future infinitive indicates time after that of the main verb (= subsequent infinitive)


It gives the following examples:

Wheelock wrote:Dīcunt eum iuvāre eam. They say that he is helping her.
Dīcunt eum iūvisse eam. They say that he helped her.
Dīcunt eum iūtūrum esse eam. They say that he will help her.

Dīxērunt eum iuvāre eam. They said that he was helping her.
Dīxērunt eum iūvisse eam. They said that he had helped her.
Dīxērunt eum iūtūrum esse eam. They said that he would help her.

Dīcent eum iuvāre eam. They will say that he is helping her.
Dīcent eum iūvisse eam. They will say that he helped her.
Dīcent eum iūtūrum esse. They will say that he will help her.


Nonetheless, I think applying these rules to "his blood was/is a beautiful color" is a bit pedantic. It's still obvious that you wouldn't translate "Dracula said that the color of his blood is beautiful" as "Dīxit Dracula colōrem sanguinis eius pulchrum futūrum esse" just because "is" is "in the future" relative to "said". Rather, "is" seems timeless even though it's conjugated in the present tense. Despite what adrianus said, I would say that either "is" or "was" would be fine in English. (Using the present tense in constructions like this does trip me up when I speak Spanish, though, where the rules of tense agreement seem stricter and you must say "fue" or "era", i.e., "was".)
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Re: Can anyone take a look at this?

Postby adrianus » Wed Jul 07, 2010 7:20 pm

"furrykef wrote:Nonetheless, I think applying these rules to "his blood was/is a beautiful color" is a bit pedantic.

This is pretty funny. If it's me you're referring to, furrykef, I'm not being pedantic. When I said "Dracula said [that] his blood was a beautiful colour" (I didn't put "was" in bold in the original, by the way) that's how I speak English!
Quàm jocosum est. Si me refers, grammatista non simulo. Sic anglicè loquor. Nec is ego obiter fui qui "was" verbum litteris fortibus primitùs denotavit.

furrykef wrote:It's still obvious that you wouldn't translate "Dracula said that the color of his blood is beautiful" as "Dīxit Dracula colōrem sanguinis eius pulchrum futūrum esse" just because "is" is "in the future" relative to "said".

I'm asking myself where that came from. You certainly would not translate in that way, as you say. However, how is "is" in the future relative to "said"? Are we talking about Latin or English here?
Me rogo unde id venerim. Certè eo modo non vertas, ut dicis. At ignoro cur dicas "is" verbum in futuro prae "said" verbo esse. Tractamusne nunc de latino aut anglico?
Last edited by adrianus on Wed Jul 07, 2010 7:36 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Can anyone take a look at this?

Postby Smythe » Wed Jul 07, 2010 7:22 pm

Thanks, furrykef! That's fascinating.

What I wasn't paying attention to in this thread was that people were switching between dīxit and dīcit. What you and Adrianus have said makes perfect sense now that I realize my error.
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Re: Can anyone take a look at this?

Postby furrykef » Wed Jul 07, 2010 7:57 pm

adrianus wrote:
"furrykef wrote:Nonetheless, I think applying these rules to "his blood was/is a beautiful color" is a bit pedantic.

This is pretty funny. If it's me you're referring to, furrykef, I'm not being pedantic. When I said "Dracula said [that] his blood was a beautiful colour" (I didn't put "was" in bold in the original, by the way) that's how I speak English!

Yeah, my post is worded a bit clumsily because I think I misunderstood your point before I went back and re-read it, and it would have been difficult to revise it without rewriting it. And I'm a lazy bastard. :lol:

I maintain that "is" would still be good English, even if it happens that you don't speak that way.


adrianus wrote:
furrykef wrote:It's still obvious that you wouldn't translate "Dracula said that the color of his blood is beautiful" as "Dīxit Dracula colōrem sanguinis eius pulchrum futūrum esse" just because "is" is "in the future" relative to "said".

I'm asking myself where that came from.

I was just pointing out that the tense thing shouldn't be taken too literally.

However, how is "is" in the future relative to "said"?

It isn't, really, which is why I put "in the future" in quotes. I just meant that "is" is present tense, and "said" is past tense, so syntactically (but not semantically), "is" is in the future relative to "said".
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Re: Can anyone take a look at this?

Postby adrianus » Wed Jul 07, 2010 9:32 pm

furrykef wrote:I maintain that "is" would still be good English, even if it happens that you don't speak that way.

Well, I would say "is" in English in reported speech with "he/she said' in those exceptional cases of a continued or general truth, but Dracula's opinion about the beauty of someone's blood is pretty subjective. A vampire would possibly disagree.

Anglicè "is" oratione obliquâ per "dixit" introductâ dicam, cum veritas perseverens vel communis interdùm significatur, at sententia Draculae prae specie sanguinis alicuius magìs ipsi solo propria est. De illa re vampyrus addubitet.
Last edited by adrianus on Wed Jul 07, 2010 9:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Can anyone take a look at this?

Postby furrykef » Wed Jul 07, 2010 9:37 pm

Subjective, sure, but if it was true (for him) then, surely it's still true now. Assuming the guy is still around to have any blood at all... we are talking about Dracula here, so if the guy's dead and his blood isn't around anymore, then I suppose "was" is the only possibility. (Heh, that possibility should have crossed my mind a lot sooner. :P)
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Re: Can anyone take a look at this?

Postby adrianus » Wed Jul 07, 2010 10:24 pm

Yes, it's rare for bloodsucking cadavers to have good housekeeping practices. They don't tend to put anything aside for a rainy day.
Ità est. Rarò cadavera sanguisugia ad artem domûs administrationis se devovent. Non ea pertinent ullam rem ad diem pluviosam seponere.
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